Favorite Writerly Advice

Time to bring another list of favorites. This one focuses on advice. I've been really lucky over the last three years, making friends with an amazing group of writers and learning from some of the best. So, I've collected some of my favorite tips I've gotten over the past few years and put them into a list just for all of you -

10. Read, read, read. And not just in your genre, but in many genres. The more good books you read, the better writer you become.
{I actually first heard this at a book signing with Cassandra Clare. I've never forgotten it!}

9. Remember that this is a business first and foremost. Treat it as such and remain professional - always.
{This came from my dad originally, and changed by me to fit writing}

8. When editing, remember that they are all just words. They can be moved, deleted, changed. Never get so attached to them that you are unwilling to change them.
{My CPs and I remind each other of this on a sometimes daily basis!}

7. At the same time, remember that YOU are the author. You know the story you are trying to create. When taking suggestions from CPs, betas and even your editors, remember that you are the architect of the story. YOU.
{Another nugget from my CPs}

6. Always read your work out loud. Or even better, use the text to speech feature on your computer or your kindle. You will catch many many many more errors this way!
{I know this from my work as a developmental psych, actually - but I was reminded of it recently by one of my betas, LK}

5. When drafting, don't think. Just write.
{Write or Die has helped solidify this in my head}

4. Writing is an adventure - so take a deep breath, muster your courage, and jump!
{My publisher and friend Heather always says I am a brave writer. After many conversations and a little soul searching, I finally understand what she means - I am always willing to jump off the cliff for the story}

3. Even in the depths of the muck you can find your inspiration.
{I have endured some difficult years recently. It was through the most intense of those moments that my best stories have been born.}

2. Give yourself permission to SUCK! To write the worst stuff ever written.
{This has been one of the hardest things for me - the perfectionist and inner editor just won't have it. But thanks to my amazing CPs, I am finding my through this little pearl of wisdom, and drafting with more freedom!}

1. When in doubt, write!
{Yea, I covered this one yesterday. Bottom line - I must write, something, daily. Even if it only a sentence.}

What is your favorite piece of writerly advice?

I have more exciting things to talk about over the next few posts - I hope you'll join me!


  1. I'm going to print this and post it over my new writing space so I can refer to it when I need a reminder. Which is about every time I sit down to write.

  2. Love everyone of these, but #5 especially speaks to me today. I'm having a hard time finding my groove these days! Thanks for the fantastic reminders!

  3. Great pieces of writerly advice. #8 is the one that I stick to whole heart and mind. It helps to make the editing process that much more bearable.

  4. your collection is great! as writers we tend to get caught up in everything else and forget that writing is fun and that we love to do it - #1 is priceless!


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